Peru Parte Dos: Where's the Andes???

Peru's flag
South America » Peru » Lima
June 11th 2006
Published: June 19th 2006EDIT THIS ENTRY

Uros IslandsUros IslandsUros Islands

Local houses on the floating reed islands on Lake Titicaca
On the end of the Armies! Sorry.....

We took the bus from Arequipa to Puno on my 30th birthday, which is a pretty rubbish way to spend a birthday, but when you’re depressed about the birthday it‘s pretty irrelevant!

Puno is a small, scruffy town at high-altitude (3,900m), and the only real reason to visit is to make a trip on to Lake Titicaca: the highest lake in the World. Indigenous tribes live on the lake, some on ‘floating’ islands made of reeds and others on real islands. We joined a tour group visiting both, and the floating Uros islands in particular were very cool, although the residents now rely on tourists for their living so it feels a little unreal. Taquile (the real island that we visited) was also good, but again the locals have cottoned on to the tourist trade and will let you take a photo of them for a few soles. The kids, in particular, were very enterprising…apparently they skip school to fleece tourists!

The plan to leave Puno for Cusco after a few days was foiled by pesky Peruvian farmers who started a strike against Peru’s international trade agreements, blockading both the roads
Uros IslandsUros IslandsUros Islands

View from the watch tower
and railway line to Cusco. So, we ended up having to bus back to Arequipa and take a flight from there to Cusco.

Cusco also lived up to the hype. It’s bustling, pretty in parts and littered with bits of Incan architecture, in many cases with colonial buildings plonked on top. Much of the city clings to the hillsides, which - combined with the altitude - makes exploring pretty tiring. Given that parts of the Inca Trail are even higher than Cusco I was getting a bit nervous about it…..

Additional photos below
Photos: 17, Displayed: 17


Old lady on Uros IslandsOld lady on Uros Islands
Old lady on Uros Islands

Old lady telling Rod off
Young salesman on Uros IslandsYoung salesman on Uros Islands
Young salesman on Uros Islands

They start them young...
Young girl on Taquile IslandYoung girl on Taquile Island
Young girl on Taquile Island

That'll be 1 sole please...
3 old blokes on Taquile Island3 old blokes on Taquile Island
3 old blokes on Taquile Island

Wearing traditional local woven hats
Entrepreneurs on Taquile IslandEntrepreneurs on Taquile Island
Entrepreneurs on Taquile Island

These three wheeler dealers wanted 1 sole each for the photo (and nearly ran off before Rod took it!)
Wagging it on Taquile IslandWagging it on Taquile Island
Wagging it on Taquile Island

Another truant on Taquile Island!
The harbour on Taquile IslandThe harbour on Taquile Island
The harbour on Taquile Island

View as we walked back down to the harbour for the boat ride back to Puno

View from the Plaza de Armas in Cusco
Cusco girl hamming it up with a lambCusco girl hamming it up with a lamb
Cusco girl hamming it up with a lamb

That'll be another sole please - and one for the lamb...
San Blas squareSan Blas square
San Blas square

View from the Muse cafe over San Blas square and Cusco
San Blas streetSan Blas street
San Blas street

One of the endless steep and narrow streets of the San Blas quarter in Cusco
San Blas squareSan Blas square
San Blas square

Looking up the hill towards San Blas

Inca walls - on which the Spanish rudely built a church!

A.K.A. "Sexywoman" View over Cusco
Sacsayhuaman's jagged teethSacsayhuaman's jagged teeth
Sacsayhuaman's jagged teeth

Inca ruins above Cusco

Tot: 0.282s; Tpl: 0.012s; cc: 21; qc: 88; dbt: 0.0943s; 88; m:apollo w:www (; sld: 5; ; mem: 6.6mb